Volleyball continues to struggle with a consistent offense

Cody Erbacher

The Kent State volleyball team continued its up-and-down season this weekend with two road losses.

Kent State coach Glen Conley said a nearly nonexistent offense was why his team lost at Toledo and Ball State this weekend after winning two games last weekend.

“Our offense went into hibernation,” he said. “We didn’t feel like we competed very well on Friday night (at Toledo). On Saturday (at Ball State) we competed, but we weren’t good enough. We had a couple serving errors and a couple hitting errors.”

While at Worthen Arena on Saturday, Kent State lost to Ball State 3-1 (25-14, 14-25, 25-15, 25-20). The Flashes offense was highlighted by junior Liva Brivule, who recorded 15 kills and 14 digs for a double-double, and sophomore Meredith Paskert, who posted 15 kills.

“They’ve been doing really well,” Conley said about Brivule’s and Paskert’s gameplay this season. “They’ve been two of our top scorers all year.”

Brivule has recorded team-leading 288 kills this season, while Paskert has 212.

Before Kent State fell to Ball State, the team traveled to Savage Arena to face Toledo.

The Flashes lost 3-0 (25-17, 25-17, 25-17).

“We can’t give up big runs early,” Conley said. “We swept the weekend before and then we get swept the weekend after.

Brivule led Kent State with 11 kills, freshman Aleksandra Nowak finished with 25 assists and senior Kristen Barr, who has recorded a team-leading 286 digs this season, added 15 digs.

The Flashes (12-13, 3-5 Mid-American Conference) are struggling with five losses in the MAC, but Conley said his team should be playing with five wins going into the second half of conference games.

“I was hoping we’d have a 5-3 MAC record,” Conley said. “I’m not making any excuses, but I feel we should have, we could have done that and we should have done that.”

Six of the Flashes’ remaining eight games will be played at home, starting next Friday as the team hosts Northern Illinois. Conley expects the home stretch to give the players more energy and possibly move Kent State to a winning conference record.

Contact Cody Erbacher at [email protected].